Bob Costas' Rant Exposes Ignorance of the Gun Control Lobby

Perhaps America's 90 million gunowners should be grateful to sports pundit Bob Costas for exposing how ignorant the mainstream media is about guns and gun laws in his now infamous 90-second halftime soundbite that serves as insightful commentary today.

Costas, quoting heavily during Dec. 2's Sunday Night Football halftime on NBC from a column by foxsports.com's Jason Whitlock about Kansas City Chiefs Jovan Belcher's murder-suicide, ignored the crime and the victim, dismissed assigning blame to criminals who commit crimes, and opted instead to make an emotional appeal for gun control by exclusively blaming guns and the "gun culture" without mentioning domestic violence, NFL brain injuries, or substance abuse.

Costas' sermon didn't go over well with a wide range of people beyond gunowners, including women and domestic violence advocates, according to S.E. Cupp in a Dec. 5 New York Daily News column.

Costas' "absurd and irresponsible diatribe" made it "all too easy to ignore the bigger story of domestic violence and train everyone's attention on the gun instead," Cupp writes. "The grossly irresponsible aspect of Costas' screed against guns is that in one fell swoop, he gave us all permission to blame the weapon instead of the perpetrator."

Radio host and Dallas News columnist Mark Davis called Costas' commentary "a Sunday sucker punch to anyone who believes in the right to bear arms," but that it was nothing new from a mainstream media that doesn't understand guns, gun laws, or the U.S. Constitution.

The rant was "the usual reflexive scapegoating of an inanimate object, a dodge that always prevents the harder task of recognizing evil and holding people accountable in cases of gun violence," Davis writes.

Rich Lowry of The National Review wrote that Costas' prattle was as transparently self-serving as it was simple-minded.

Costas' outrage should "have been directed at the vastly profitable football-industrial complex of which he is a small part," Lowry writes. "In keeping with his view ... that the NFL is 'unacceptably brutal,' he could have said: 'As I stand here, I, too, profit from a game that depends on men doing violence to one another with effects we still don't fully understand.' But that would have hit too close to home, and the third quarter beckoned."

While many gunowners and Second Amendment advocates disagree with Costas, and question the forum he chose to discuss such a politically charged and complicated issue, most are not lobbying NBC to fire the veteran sports broadcaster.

Not to say there aren't some calls to can Costas.

As of Dec. 5, there were at least five Fire Bob Costas groups on Facebook, including one with 1,742 members and about a dozen Facebook pages, including one with 1,388 likes.

The Second Amendment Foundation is circulating an online petition demanding Whitlock, Costas, Fox Sports, NBC and the NFL issue "an immediate public apology to America's millions of law-abiding and peaceful gun owners and civil rights advocates who exercise their rights protected under the Second and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution."

Financial advisor and Examiner.com writer Ken Schortgen, Jr., says American gunowners carry the financial clout to make the TV networks and the NFL take notice if they threaten to boycott Whitlock's and Costas' work.

"A boycott, or even threat of a boycott, is something sponsors take seriously," Schortgen writes in a Dec. 3 column. "There are many examples of celebrity announcers being suspended or fired for comments that struck a chord with the American people, when they were led to demand stations take action or be boycotted if their issues were not addressed."